Sullivan County, Indiana Genealogy

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Guide to Sullivan County, Indiana ancestry, genealogy and family history, birth records, marriage records, death records, census records, family history, and military records.

County Facts
County seat: Sullivan
Organized: January 15, 1817
Parent County(s): Knox[1]
Neighboring Counties
Knox  • Greene  • Clay  • Vigo  • Crawford (IL)  • Clark (IL)
See County Maps
Indiana, Sullivan County Courthouse.png
Location Map
Indiana, Sullivan County Locator Map.png
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County Information[edit | edit source]

Description[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County was named for Daniel Sullivan, who is said by some to have been a Revolutionary War general killed by Native Americans while carrying a dispatch between Fort Vincennes and Louisville. The county is located in the west-central area of the state.[2]

County Courthouse[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County Courthouse
100 Courthouse Square #304
Sullivan, IN 47882
Phone: 812-268-4657
County Website

Sullivan County Health Department
27 S. Main St.
Sullivan, IN 47882
Health Officer: Michael Gamble, MD, MBA
Phone: 812-268-0224
Fax: 812-268-0423
Health Department

County Clerk has marriage, divorce, probate and court records from 1850. [3]
Health Department has birth records and death records.
Copies may be obtained from the county health department or the Indiana State Division of Vital Records.

Sullivan County, Indiana Record Dates[edit | edit source]

Information for this chart was taken from various sources, often containing conflicting dates. This information should be taken as a guide and should be verified by contacting the county and/or the state government agency.

Known Beginning Dates for Major County Records[4]
Birth* Marriage Death* Court Land Probate Census
1882 1850 1880 1850 1850 1850 1807
*Statewide registration for births in 1907 and deaths in Oct 1899. General compliance by 1917.

Record Loss[edit | edit source]

February 1850 -- Courthouse burned and all records except wills from 1841 were destroyed.

For suggestions about research in places that suffered historic record losses, see:

Boundary Changes[edit | edit source]

Populated Places[edit | edit source]

For a complete list of populated places, including small neighborhoods and suburbs, visit HomeTown Locator. The following are the most historically and genealogically relevant populated places in this county:[7]

Unincorporated communities
Ghost towns

History Timeline[edit | edit source]

Resources[edit | edit source]

Bible Records[edit | edit source]

Biographies[edit | edit source]

Business, Commerce, and Occupations[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries[edit | edit source]

Cemeteries of Sullivan County, Indiana online and in print
Tombstone Transcriptions Online
Tombstone Transcriptions in Print (Often more complete)
List of Cemeteries in the County
See Indiana Cemeteries for more information.


Census Records[edit | edit source]

For tips on accessing Sullivan County census records online, see: Indiana Census.

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1820 3,498
1830 4,630 32.4%
1840 8,315 79.6%
1850 10,141 22.0%
1860 15,064 48.5%
1870 18,453 22.5%
1880 20,336 10.2%
1890 21,877 7.6%
1900 26,005 18.9%
1910 32,439 24.7%
1920 31,630 −2.5%
1930 28,133 −11.1%
1940 27,014 −4.0%
1950 23,667 −12.4%
1960 21,721 −8.2%
1970 19,889 −8.4%
1980 21,107 6.1%
1990 18,993 −10.0%
2000 21,751 14.5%
2010 21,475 −1.3%
Source: "".

Church Records[edit | edit source]

Most church records are held by individual churches. For contact information, check a phone directory, such as SearchBug or Dex Knows. Some denominations are gathering their records into a central repository. For more information about these major repositories, see Indiana Church Records.
List of Churches and Church Parishes

Court Records[edit | edit source]

Directories[edit | edit source]

Emigration and Immigration[edit | edit source]

Ethnic, Political, and Religious Groups[edit | edit source]

Funeral Homes[edit | edit source]

Genealogies[edit | edit source]

Guardianship[edit | edit source]

Land and Property Records[edit | edit source]

Land and property records can place an ancestor in a particular location, provide economic information, and reveal family relationships. Land records include: deeds, abstracts and indexes, mortgages, leases, grants and land patents. See Indiana Land and Property for additional information about early Indiana land grants and patents.

After land was transferred from the government to private ownership, subsequent transactions were recorded at the Sullivan County courthouse, where records are currently housed.

Local Histories[edit | edit source]

Local histories are available for Sullivan County. County histories may include biographies; church, school and government histories; and military information. For more information about local histories, see Indiana Local Histories.

Maps and Gazetteers[edit | edit source]

Clark CountyCrawford CountyKnox CountyGreene CountyClay CountyVigo CountyIN SULLIVAN.PNG
Click a neighboring county
for more resources

Migration[edit | edit source]

Military Records[edit | edit source]

Mexican War

Mexican War Articles

Civil War
Civil War service men from Sullivan County served in various regiments. Men often joined a company (within a regiment) that originated in their county. Listed below are companies that were specifically formed in Sullivan County.

Civil War Books:

  • Booth, Louise. Waiting for the Moment. (Villa Park, Calif: D.R. Booth Associates, 1983.) Online at: FamilySearch Digital Books
  • County Military History Chapter 8 (Part III) in History of Greene and Sullivan Counties, State of Indiana; Newell, Iowa: Bireline, 1983. Reprint of original published: Chicago : Goodspeed Bros., 1884. 1 v. Online at: FamilySearch Digital Library

World War I

Naturalization and Citizenship[edit | edit source]

Newspapers[edit | edit source]

Indiana newspapers may contain genealogical value including obituaries, births, marriages, deaths, anniversaries, family gatherings, family travel, achievements, business notices, engagement information, and probate court proceedings.

For more Indiana newspaper information see the wiki page Indiana Newspapers.

Obituaries[edit | edit source]

Other Records[edit | edit source]

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Probate Records[edit | edit source]

In most counties in Indiana, probate records have been kept by the county clerk of the circuit court. They include wills, fee books, claim registers, legacy records, inheritance records, probate ticklers, and dockets. The records are available at the Sullivan County courthouse. For more information, see Indiana Probate Records.

School Records[edit | edit source]

Social Security Records[edit | edit source]

Tax Records[edit | edit source]

Indiana tax records complement land records and can be used in place of censuses or to supplement the years between censuses. Because only persons who owned taxable property were listed, many residents were not included in tax lists. There may also be gaps of several years in the tax records of some counties. For more information see the wiki page Indiana Taxation.

Vital Records[edit | edit source]

Vital records consist of birth, death, marriage and divorce records. Indiana law in 1882 required registration of births and deaths in counties. The Indiana Department of Health has birth records filed after October 1907 and death records filed after January 1900 for deaths. Copies may be obtained from the county health department or the Indiana State Division of Vital Records.

Birth[edit | edit source]

Marriage[edit | edit source]

Death[edit | edit source]

Divorce[edit | edit source]

Research Facilities[edit | edit source]

Archives[edit | edit source]

Listed below are archives in Sullivan County. For state-wide archival repositories, see Indiana Archives and Libraries.

Family History Centers[edit | edit source]

Family History Center and Affiliate Library Locator map - search for local Family History Centers or Affiliate Libraries

  • Family History Centers provide one-on-one assistance, free access to center-only databases, and to premium genealogical websites.
  • FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries have access to most center-only databases, but may not always have full services normally provided by a family history center.

Local Centers and Affiliate Libraries
Introduction to Family History Centers

Libraries[edit | edit source]

Listed below are libraries in Sullivan County. For state-wide genealogical societies, see Indiana Archives and Libraries.

Sullivan County Public Library
100 South Crowder Street
Sullivan, IN 47882
Phone: 812-268-4957

Museums[edit | edit source]

Sullivan County History Museum
Sullivan County Historical Society
10 S. Court Street
Sullivan, IN 47882
Phone: 812-268-6253

Societies[edit | edit source]

Listed below are societies in Sullivan County. For state-wide genealogical societies, see Indiana Societies.

Wabash Valley Genealogy Society
P.O. Box 7012
Terre Haute, IN 47802-7012

Websites[edit | edit source]

Research Guides[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Indiana. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. Wikipedia contributors, "Sullivan County," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Indiana accessed 04/03/2017.
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Indiana.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  4. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Indiana.At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  5. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), Indiana. At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  6. Wikipedia contributors, "Sullivan County, Indiana" in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia at,_Indiana (accessed 10 May 2012).
  7. Wikipedia contributors, "Sullivan County, Indiana," in Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia,,_Indiana, accessed 09 January 2020.